Where I am, the air's already acrid with "the smell of cordite." I don't like it. As I transitioned from undernourished geeky kid to geeky college student to fat geeky adult, I found the smells of gunpowder less and less conducive to merrymaking. I happen to like breathing more now, and I'm considering celebrating New Year's in Los Banos, where the air should be more up to international pollution standards. It's a pipe dream, I know, what with all the stuff I have to deal with in the Metro Manila area and the Batangas wedding anniversary bash. But... Batangas, which is where I'm really going come the 27th, is more or less within striking distance of Los Banos. Maybe I can avoid the avalanche of relatives long enough to slip away to Los Banos unnoticed. We'll see what happens.